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All Quotes by author - John Shelby Spong
" All religion seems to need to prove that it's the only truth. And that's where it turns demonic. Because that's when you get religious wars and persecutions and burning heretics at the stake. "
" Almost any poll of regular churchgoers will reveal that their favorite book in the New Testament is the Gospel of John. It is the book that is most often used at Christian funerals. "
" A lot of people hear me attacking their certainty. I don't have any interest in doing that. I'm interested in penetrating the meaning of certainty. "
" Apologetic explanations do not develop unless there is a reality that has to be explained and defended. Jesus was undeniably a figure of history. "
" Christianity is, I believe, about expanded life, heightened consciousness and achieving a new humanity. It is not about closed minds, supernatural interventions, a fallen creation, guilt, original sin or divine rescue. "
" Christianity is not about the divine becoming human so much as it is about the human becoming divine. That is a paradigm shift of the first order. "
" God is a presence that I can never define but I could never deny. "
" I admire our ancestors, whoever they were. I think the first self-conscious person must have shaken in his boots. Because as he becomes self-conscious, he's no longer part of nature. He sees himself against nature. He looks at the vastness of the universe and it looks hostile. "
" I am a child of the 21st century. "
" I am trying to understand what it means to be a Christian without being religious. "
" I believe God is real, but I believe God calls me beyond myself to take responsibility for my life and to try top work to allow other people to be themselves and to take responsibility for their lives. "
" I believe that God is very real. "
" I believe that God is very real. I believe that I live my life every day inside the reality of this God. I call this God by different words. I describe God as the source of life and the source of love and the ground of being. "
" I believe that is what the God experience does for us. It calls us beyond our limits into the fullness of life - into a capacity to love people we are not taught to love - and into an ability to be who we are. "
" I cannot possibly conceive of my planet Earth as the centre of a three-tiered universe. I know rather that the sun, around which my planet Earth revolves, is a middle sized star in a galaxy called the Milky Way that has over a hundred billion other suns or stars within it. "
" I can only give away the love that I have received. "
" I do not live in a world where people can walk on water, or still a storm, or take five loaves of bread and feed 5000 men plus women and children. If that is a requirement of my commitment to Jesus, I find it difficult to stretch my mind outside the capacities of my world view. "
" I don't think much about my physical body going off into the long, green fairways of Heaven to play golf. "
" I experience God as the power of love. "
" I find that children have very little trouble understanding non-literal stories. "
" If I were a child of Tibet or of Arabia, I suspect the path I'd walk would be the Buddhist path or the Muslim path. And I don't mind saying that I don't invalidate any of those paths. "
" If you begin to give people hope that there is a brighter future, there is a new tomorrow, then the people who were yesterday's terrorists become tomorrow's elected officials and they're part of the system. "
" I learned early in life that you get places by having the right enemies. "
" I live on the other side of Charles Darwin and I can no longer see human light as having been created perfect and falling into sin, I see us rather emerging into higher and higher levels of consciousness and higher and higher levels of complication. "
" I live on the other side of Copernicus and Galileo; I can no longer conceive of God as sort of above the sky, looking down and keeping record books. "
" In academia, I discovered that issues and insights, commonplace among the scholars, are viewed as highly controversial and even as 'heresy' in the churches. "
" Inequality for gay and lesbian people is no longer a debatable issue in either church or state. "
" I never really liked the Gospel of John because I never could find the humanity of Jesus in it. I thought it presented Jesus as a visitor from another planet; in addition, John's gospel is and has been interpreted as a document that fuels anti-Semitism in the church. "
" In the first gospel, Mark, the risen Christ appears physically to no one, but by the time we come to the last gospel, John, Thomas is invited to feel the nail prints in Christ's hands and feet and the spear wound in his side. "
" I spend my life studying that book, and every book I've written has in some sense been a book about the Bible, and that's what I mean by reclaiming its value and its essence for a world that no longer treats it literally and no longer reads it traditionally. "
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